Going off-grid in Ecuador – join me!

Hannah on horseback - this could be you
One of our readers sent the story that follows. There are hundreds of other messages like this on our free service, LandBuddy.

Hi everyone at off-grid – I was wondering if you’ve ever considered relocating to another country? I’ve recently moved to Ecuador and have a goal to be off-grid and living self-sufficient in the very near future. I used to own horses in the U.S. and would love to find equestrian minded people to live in our community.

I want to live in harmony with nature, but I also plan to have modern conveniences. I don’t feel there is a reason you have to give up technology to live in harmony with nature. Most people think Ecuador is a third world country in which there are no modern conveniences. This is not true. We have all the conveniences here as we did in the U.S. The larger cities also have excellent health care and good health insurance is available at a very cheap rate (our family of three costs $79/month).

Ecuador is a very diverse country with beaches, the Galapagos Islands, jungles & mountains. The beauty of this country is breathtaking. The couple areas I’m considering purchasing land would be in areas that boast “eternal spring” like weather and a year round growing season. The nights are cool and the days are warm with an average temperature between 50 and 85 degrees year round. Houses don’t need or have HVAC systems here! This I think is a huge bonus for living an off the grid self-sustaining lifestyle!

The land I’m most intrigued with is over 600 acres and is untouched virgin land. There are natural springs, waterfalls, streams, abundant pasture, forests, mountains, etc. It would be very ideal for hydro-electric power. From what I’ve researched it seems like the most reliable and cost effective source for electric. The asking price for the land is extremely low. And property taxes are virtually non-existant here in Ecuador.

I’m looking for down to earth people who are easy to get along with. I’m not a fan of drama or gossip. I would like to find individuals who are open minded, willing to compromise in order to settle disputes, forgive & forget attitude, honest, hardworking, clean, have strong family values and a good moral compass. Not looking for people who have criminal backgrounds (will check), problems with violence, drug or alcohol issues.

I think it would be very advantageous to find individuals or families with experience in the following areas: organic farming (fruits, vegetables, herbs, animals), construction, off-grid technology, previous experience with eco-communities, etc.

I have many possible ideas for this community including many community based businesses. At this point I’m still very flexible. However, the most important features would be our own source of water and power along with the capability to grow most of our food.

There are a couple wonderful families here in Ecuador who are very interested in being part of this community farm. One lady is a natural holistic doctor.

If you have any interest, please send an email to mattclaims74 at aol dot com.

26 Responses

  1. Retired single woman how much we talking property to build or house , interested in growing my own fruit trees. I’m a WWOOFER retired,

  2. have you check with the natives in the area i hear you have to have their ok to live in thier area and i am told they control all water rights , my wife and i are use to camping and i love dogs and think security is very big concern. hard to get to might be a good plan but it seems a road in at least so far would be a must. would like to hear more and see the area

  3. Hello, We are very interested and will be in Mindo next week. We are currently in Cotacachi. Please contact us. We would love for you to meet us and to explore options. Thank you!

  4. Hello. We are in Ecuador now and looking to partner to buy a property near Mindo. We have found 15 HA. We arrived a month ago. We are willing to help someone of the correct attitude and character. The property we found is nice- no flooding possible. It is mostly flat or gently sloping, we three wells. We can’t find another section here regarding Ecuador. The property will initially be 100% off-grid. There are good money making possibilities nearby. We want the property to be an organic farm. Please email us at cachorro35@yahoo.com if interested. The property is 5,000 per HA. We would like to divide it into 3, 5 HA portions for 2 other families and us. The property can only be purchased with the full 15 HA according to the seller. My husband is a surgical tech, I am a biologist, and we both have EMT training. We are looking to be one big “family”. Please review my profile. Cheers, Deborah

  5. Cut a very long story short my best friend and 4 kids between us are just researching, talked a long time and are so ready, but we just have no idea!!! Found your site tonight and got very happy! Any clues would be much appreciated,
    kind regards to all, Rach and Jo namaste :)

  6. Hey, I consider myself an ecuadorean after living there for 12 years, recently i moved to Denver, CO but realized that american life isnt for me and I am thinking of returning to Ecuador and live in a sustainable eco house and also wish to find a community of like minded people although i have many friends in Guayaquil, Cuenca and Montanita, so far its proven difficult to find. If your in need of any help construction wise, my dad can get cheap labor from the locals he has befriended and he is also an architectual engineer and can help you build whatever you need.

  7. Hey!! I’m hoping to find a off-grid community to join. Kid @ dog friendly. (They are my children :) I have funds & will power to live a happy healthy sustainable life! I want this for my family because it’s the very best in my opinion. Feel free to contact me erica.sasser@yahoo.com

  8. I have to say that this site has been the most interesting that i have read for a long time,if only i was 20 years younger and had a more adventuras wife. Ah well .
    Pity realy as i built my own home in the uk and built this roof top appartment here in lima too.We have a fantastic uninterupted view from our patio,being that we are on the 4th floor.
    Back in the uk 15 years ago i had a constuction firm.Unfortunatly im 73 now, but still building and doing my own welding.

  9. Copiano, here is a website you may be interested in. This is a community underway near Cuenca, Ecuador (we lived outside of Cuenca for about 9 months). I don’t know the person in charge, but thought I’d pass it along to you. He is developing a community and building earth homes. (The area is a little too chilly for us at night time.) I’ll send you and email too.

  10. Dan….you’re funny! lol I think you’d fit in perfect here in Ecuador. Public urination is very common. If you’re a man and do not urinate in public….you might just be a “foreigner”.

  11. Hi Rocky King & David Serada, Sorry I haven’t checked my posting for awhile. Been very busy. The best way to contact me is directly by email: mattclaims74@aol.com. I would be very interested in talking. I also have a skype account if you’d rather talk on the phone. I’m currently living in Vilcabamba, Ecuador and still searching for land.

  12. Hi There, I am very interested in being contacted by anyone who is wanting to go off-grid, however pc use is very necessary for me, so perhaps that is not entirely off-grid. I would also appreciate any in-put or information on the process and transitioning. If anyone knows of any forming communities, please let me know, as I would love to contact them for a possible visit. I am open to hearing about what others dreams and plans are as well, perhaps it may match my own, and become a joint venture for a small or larger group of us ? I look forward to your replies ! Bright Blessings, Cecilia

  13. My family is also looking for self sustainable living in South America! We currently live in Florida. We have been looking into Earth ships. My husband is very handy. He was a helicoptor mechanic for 7 years, a very talented electromechanical technician. Our plan is for him to intern and learn how to build these beautiful homes. Please let me know if you are still interested in a community! My family consists of myself (an RN) my husband, our 4 children (ages 12, 7, 3, and 5 months. My dearest friend of over 15 years is also moving with us (herself, her husband, and her son.) We are very honest and hardworking people who are looking for a simplistic life with nature. My e-mail is RNJessicaMartin@yahoo.com

  14. hi hannah, two of my sons were travelling in south america last year and more recently my youngest son and girlfriend. they loved it..i am looking to create a place where we all could be in ana eco village situation. we are presently in the uk but if the right scenario presented itself i am ready to move.its all quite a big deal to come from europe as we would have to fly or come by boat ..my vision , project plan is on my website ..but obviously this is just outline thinking/ planning..lizi jamal

  15. I do biointensive gardening,raise milk goats. My family is first priority. I have been building worrd frame and compacted earth homes for years. I have an electronics background and have built solar ice systems, solar & wind power systems, ect ect… Oh, wait, I peed in a parking lot once so now a sex offender, guess I cant come, damn.. Nevermind

  16. Hi i have two daughters andn wife that I would like to experience Equidor in a permenant way if you could help with showing some land that might be available I have enough money to suit the needs of this venture the probloem is I dont know how to X-pat myself out of the country im in efficiently and with expedience sounds great but I would like 200 acres or so for my family and anyone would be able to grow food there as long as they share some of it with us and likewise.
    My skillset is varied construction concrete forms would like to lern how to buid geodesic dome homes Class 1a transport lisence as well
    Send a email im leaving soon to come see that country

  17. Sorry, I haven’t responded sooner…..I forgot to check the post since many have responded by email.
    Robert Curtis: The term “off-grid” may possibly have different meanings to some individuals. My personal interpretation of living “off-grid” is having my own electric and water sources and not being dependent on municipal sources. I do, however, want to have internet services (perhaps this isn’t being off-grid in the true sense?). In fact, the land I’m most interested in does not have access to municipal electric or water. Currently there is not even a road to access the land…..you have to go by horseback or hike. I’m not opposed to purchasing land with city electric or water, but I would still desire to have a natural water source and technology to create my own electricity.
    Grampa deer: Yes, I agree having a three year old son has quite possibly made me a little less adventurous & maybe even boring :)
    Lori Scott: Yes, I’m still interested in the virgin land I mentioned in my post. I’ve gotten quite a few inquiries and interested parties. However, I need about 10 families willing to invest $50,000 +/- each to make that particular property a reality. This money would purchase the land, build roads, electric/water systems, community center with nice amenities, barns, fencing, tilapia ponds, animals, etc… My plan would be for every family to own property (5-10 acres) and the rest would be shared community land. There are also many other potential properties of smaller size which would be cheaper and require fewer families. If we (husband, son & I) can’t get my community plan to become a reality, then we intend on purchasing just enough land for us to be self-sufficient/off-grid. We would also consider purchasing land and dividing it evenly among 1-2 other families. We hope to purchase land by the end of the year. We’re prepared to do it by ourselves, but feel it would be more rewarding with like minded neighbors. When are you coming to Ecuador & where are you planning to visit? Perhaps we could meet?

  18. We are a family in South West Louisiana and have discussed Ecuador in this sense in the past. I am a RN, hubby is a welder among his many trades. Are you homeschooling?

  19. I’m very interested in your community off the grid. Although I have a background in construction you sound like you’re not looking to get completely off the grid. I’m a hairstylist buy trade but have been in the many construction trades when younger. The place sounds like a great place.

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